I think the AFL should put a team in Canberra before even getting serious about a 3rd team in Sydney, which is at the very least 30 years away1. It is too commercially risky for the AFL not to have a strong market share in Sydney, population c. 8,000,000, by 2050. The AFL has NO choice but to, eventually (perhaps c. 2035), have 3rd team in wealthy & influential Sydney.
Historically, the hourly rate of prime time advertising in Sydney is the most expensive in Australia- more than Melbourne, even though the populations have become very close. The AFL must capture a much higher % of these Sydney premium $ rates- failure to do so "enriches/empowers" its sporting competitors, who will then be more able to attack the AFL.
Sydney will indefinitely retain its higher advertising status over Melbourne, even when programs have similar ratings in both cities (ie Sydney has the most valuable advertising "per 1000 person rating unit" in Australia- because Sydney property prices has given it a greater median wealth than Melbourne).
I have not been able to locate the exact costs of Aust. advertising rates per 1000 people, for each capital city. This link, however, re USA rates, explains the reasoning for advertisers paying higher rates in different cities.
"Television advertising is priced on a Cost-Per-Thousand (CPM) basis, which is the cost for your ad to be seen by 1,000 people. The CPM varies widely, depending on a few different factors, the biggest of which is location (both my emphases)".
Want to advertise on television but not sure where to start? Read this TV advertising guide where we give you everything you need to know to start today!fitsmallbusiness.com
At the opposite end of desirability for advertisers is the Tas. market- it is all Regional (ie less valuable cf. metro), & has the 2nd lowest (to the NT) per capita median wealth in Aust.
Tas. will, however, probably be granted soon a provisional licence to join the AFL, because the AFL desires to restore its once fabled VFL/AFL recruitment goldmine of champions/great players (assuming its Bid can convince the AFL it can sustain revenues of $40,000,000 pa).
The AFL must regain its status (held until the 1980's, & intro of Canberra Raiders NRL) as the most popular code in Canberra, Aust.'s centre of power: via a South Sydney Canberra AFL team.
Canberra, considered a Regional advertising market, also has Aust.'s highest median wages (due to its large no. of well paid public servants).
Canberra has it pretty good compared to rest of Australia, a new report sayswww.canberratimes.com.au
2. This link is a snapshot revealing the NSW female GR AF significant growth in 2018 "...NSW alone seeing 18,000 new female players joining the ranks".
(For AF, most of this 18,000 increase is rubbery. Like all sports' organisations in Aust., the majority of this 18,000 increase does not represent females playing in Club or school AF competitions, the most important nos.)
More importantly, however, in 2019 " ...female participation rates in registered competitions have risen by more than 17% from 2018 to 2019, even after substantial growth in the past few years". The female GR AF boom in NSW is continuing.
Without the persistence of her mum Michelle, ruck Erin McKinnon wouldn't be playing football for Greater Western Sydneywomens.afl
As an example of the wisdom/necessity for the AFL to "follow the money in Sydney", have a glance at the sponsors of the affluent Mosman area jnr AF club!
The Mosman Swans have c. 550 players, not including Auskick, & are growing significantly.
Also, re the other 2 sponsors listed
- Cadence built this 4 level, 6 BR modest waterfront home on Sydney'e northern beaches- worth c. $6,000,000+?
-Dixon Advisory are top end financial advisors